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đź“° News and Stories

Google Home Hub is the Most Popular Smart Display in Australia – Capturing Over 40% Market Share in Just Two Months: Google Home Hub was launched in late October 2018 and Australia was among the first countries with availability. The timing and value proposition must have been good because, after just 10 weeks, Google Home Hub commanded 41.5% of the smart display installed base in Australia even though it was the last device to arrive in the market. Amazon Echo Show and Spot combined accounted for just 13.2% market share, slightly behind its 14.2% share of all smart speakers. This is despite the fact that the Spot was available in Australia five months earlier and the Show beat Home Hub to market by about a month.

Voice Purchasing Rose in 2018 Among US Smart Speaker Owners, Voice-Assisted Product Search is Even Bigger: The U.S. Smart Speaker Consumer Adoption Report for 2019 revealed that 15% of U.S. smart speaker owners say they were making purchases by voice on a monthly basis at the end of 2018. That is up from 13.6% that were using voice for retail purchases at the beginning of the year. Keep in mind that this reflects a 10.5% rise in the relative use of smart speaker-based voice purchasing on top of a 40% rise in year-over-year device ownership. This voice shopping cohort reflects about 4% of all U.S. adults.

Voice Publishing Platform BotTalk Releases a New Version: BotTalk's new features include: voice templates with "prelisten" in the browser function and one click voice apps creation directly form the landing page.

Alexa Skill Developers Can Now Optimize Their Experiences for Alexa Auto Vehicles and Devices: Published Alexa skills are automatically available on all Alexa-enabled devices. However, tailoring your skill interface for unique settings or devices helps you provide your customers with the best possible Alexa experience. Amazon announces that you can now customize your skill experience for Echo Auto, which is now shipping to select customers in the US via our invite program, and vehicles and other aftermarket devices that support Alexa Auto. The automotive experience introduces another way for customers to interact with skills, while they are on-the-go and their attention is on the road. Now you can adapt your skill experience for any locale to be succinct, location-aware, and adaptive to your customer’s needs while they’re outside the home.

đź““ Tutorials and Opinions

How to Build an Adventure Voice Game on Alexa: 5 Things Game Developers Should Consider: 1. What story will your voice game tell? 2. What is Alexa's role in the voice game? 3. How will players interact with your voice game? 4. What is your plan for content expansion? 5. How will you expand your voice game with premium content?

Conversational Design Tips - Questions: One of the most effective ways to get the user to continue the conversation (e.g., make a choice) is to ask a question. When the call to action isn’t clear, the user won’t know when, or how, to respond.

Updated Tutorial: Build a Monetized Fact Skill with the Premium Facts Sample Skill: Many developers have created a skill using our fact sample skill template because it’s an easy way to get started in the world of voice. The premium facts sample skill (available in Node.js or Python) is similar in that it is an easy way to learn how in-skill purchasing (ISP) works. Using this sample skill and the monetization tool in the Alexa Developer Console, anyone can start building a monetized fact skill.

Assistant on Air - Google YouTube Tutorials: Check out the first episode of #AssistantonAir, where expert #AoGDevs share tips for creating new Actions!

📆  Events

Live Streaming from GDC 2019: Bringing the Player’s Voice into the Game: The Game Developers Conference (GDC) is in full swing! Alexa evangelists Memo Doring and Amit Jotwani did the whole day live streaming session from the Alexa Twitch channel to discuss how to build voice-first games using the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK).

Photo by Jan Antonin Kolar on Unsplash